Meet the man who made a 10 hour film of paint drying just to make a point

Picture: YouTube/Au Cafe Des Loisirs

Lights, camera, action…

For Charlie Lyne, it's more a case of lights, camera, inaction. The young filmmaker's new offering has been given a U rating after the British Board of Film Classification deemed it suitable for all audiences.

No spoilers, please!

It's unlikely you'll want to sit through the entirety of Paint Drying, which features more than 10 hours of, well, paint drying on a brick wall.

Is art-house cinema losing the plot?

This is more of a protest project. Mr Lyne, 24, submitted the work to the BBFC to rail against the "prohibitively expensive" fees the classification body charges to rate a film. Two examiners were forced to watch the 607-minute film before handing it the U rating, concluding there was "no material likely to offend or harm".

That must have had the censors nodding off in their popcorn.

"They are seasoned professionals, and something like this wouldn't faze them. They have to watch a lot of material," a BBFC spokeswoman said. She added Paint Drying had been classified as any other film would.

How did the film end up at the BBFC?

Last year Mr Lyne launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise the cash to send it to the body "in a protest against censorship and mandatory classification". He said at the time: "Each certificate costs around £1,000 for a feature film of average length. For many independent filmmakers, such a large upfront [sum] can prove prohibitively expensive.

Was Mr Lyne satisfied with the result?

"I think it's unlikely that this one small act of protest will directly impact the way that film censorship works in the UK, but it has done what I hoped it would, which is encourage people to discuss the issue and question the role that the BBFC plays in the British film industry," he told i. There is no data available yet to indicate whether public demand is high enough to warrant a sequel.

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